Lusby, MD - In the loud gym at Patuxent High, nothing was stirring, not even a mouse. Well, except for the players and coaches on the court. As this was the final home game before winter break, the ‘PaxNation’ took to an old-time Taylor University, the Silent Night. With 3:50 left in the first quarter, CJ Johnson banked in a mid-range jump shot, and set the crowd off as the Panthers had scored their seventh point. Until then, they were silent.
The game started off slowly, with missed field goals for the first two minutes until a Myron Young layup with 5:41 left in the first opened the scoring. Patuxent’s lead was cut to 1, but then shot up to 4 as Juan Watkins connected on a baseline three pointer. The Panther lead was 5-1, and Stone coach Dale Lamberth signaled time. Whatever was said during that timeout really set in, as the Cougars came out and ended the quarter on a 13-2 run. The score going into the second was 15-7 in the favor of Stone.
The second quarter was the most paced of the game. Both teams found things that worked to score and they took full advantage of them. Patuxent shrank Stone’s lead to 3 at one point in the quarter, but could never get it closer. The opportunity was there for Patuxent to get in closer as Shawn Barclay was tossed from the game for getting a double technical. However, Patuxent could only make 2 of 4 free throws, and Stone continued to roll with their offense. The half ended with a score of 26-19.
The third quarter slowed back down tremendously as Patuxent came out of the half on a hot streak and took the lead back from Stone. It jockeyed back and forth for a bit until Stone regained it for good on a Kevin Skidmore layup to make the score 30-28. Patuxent tied it once more at 32-32, but Stone pulled away and took a 5 point lead into the 4th.
In the fourth Patuxent pulled within 1 but couldn’t get over the hump as fouls crippled them. In the fourth quarter alone, Stone made 8 free throws. They held on to their lead, and then ran the clock out on the Panthers. The scoreboard read 51-41 as the buzzer went off. Skidmore led the Cougars in scoring with 17 points coming off the bench. Patuxent was led by Juan Watkins who scored 9. Stone will play at La Plata Monday, and Patuxent has off until January 4 when they will play at Leonardtown.